Beaches,  Travel Guides,  Visayas

Cebu-Siquijor Backpacking: Places to Visit, Where to Stay, Activities, Itinerary and Sample Budget

Cebu, dubbed as the Queen City of the South, has been eyed by both foreign and local tourists due to the vast enthralling scenes and activities that the history books didn’t mention yet will surely quench one’s thirst for some adrenaline rush and give one an infinite capacity to be amazed and thankful for the adventure and experience. It never runs out of something new for people always breaks into another piece of paradise in the province that is yet known to everyone. The same thing goes with its neighboring island, Siquijor. If Cebu is an open book, this off the beaten path province is gradually making its way to the travelers’ destination top notch because of its unspoiled wonders ranging from the most laid back to the most exhilarating enough to get you stoked. Thus, as much as the time, energy and your bank accounts (lol) permit, you should start creating lit memories and cross these out in your bucket lists!
We booked a flight from Clark via Traveloka app. Flights are cheaper when coming from Clark than the other airports in Manila (i.e. NAIA terminals 1 and 2). Another thing, if you don’t want to bloody book a flight by staying up all night and waiting on the longest queue in your life during airline seat sales and Travel Expos, you might want to check flights at Traveloka from time to time since it is more convenient and cheap, too. That is actually what we did.

DAY 0:
8:00pm – ETD from Trinoma to Clark
10:00pm – ETA Clark Airport
11:00pm – Check in Counter
1:15am – ETD from Clark to Cebu
DAY 1: South Cebu Tour
2:00am – ETA Mactan Airport
2:10am – cab to South Bus Terminal
2:45am – board to bus bound for Oslob
3:00am – ETD Oslob
6:00am – ETA Oslob/ Resort for Whale Shark Watching
6:00am – change clothes
6:15am – orientation
6:30am – whale shark watching proper
7:00am – wash up
8:00am – ETD to inn
8:20am – ETA Gravino Pension Inn/ Check in
8:30am – breakfast
9:30am – ETD Bato-Oslob
10:00am – ETA Bato, transfer to bus bound for Barili
11:30am – ETA Badian/ lunch
12:30nn – start canyoneering
4:00pm – wash up
5:00pm – bus to Bato – Oslob
7:00pm – ETA Bato/ transfer bus
7:30pm – ETA Oslob Public Market for dinner
8:30pm – back to inn/ retire
Whale Shark Watching at Oslob, Cebu
It was my first time to swim with whale sharks. It was indeed one for the books but after that one hour encounter, I told myself that I won’t do it again nor promote such activity. I swam with them close enough to see that most of them were wounded. These gentle beasts are heavily dependent on the local’s feeding when they should be migrating and knowledgeable of hunting on their own.

Instead of Whale Shark watching, I suggest you do something else or visit some place else such as swimming with the sardines at Moalboal, visiting other falls in South Cebu, going to Pescador island or go on a historical walk in the region.

Kawasan Falls, Badian, Cebu

DAY 2: Siquijor Island Tour
3:10am – wake up/ prepare
3:40am – ETD to Liloan Port
4:30am – ETA Liloan Port
4:45am – ferry from Liloan Port, Santander to Sibulan Port (Dumaguete)
5:20am – ETA Sibulan port/ jeep to Dumaguete Port going to Siquijor
5:40am – ETA Dumaguete port to Siquijor
5:45am – ETD to Siquijor
7:30am – ETA Siquijor, Siquijor/ breakfast
8:30am – start tour
8:40am – St. Francis De Asisi Church
9:00am – Paliton Beach
10:30am – Casilay Spring Park
10:45am – Century Old Balete Tree
11:30am – Lazi Church/ Convent
12:00pm – Cambugahay Falls
2:30pm – Salagdoong Beach
4:00pm – wash up
4:30pm – ETD to Larena Port
4:50pm – ETA Port
5:00pm – ETD to Cebu
7:30pm – ETA Cebu/ dinner at Oslob Public Market
8:30pm – back to inn/ retire

DAY 3: Cebu City Tour
5:30am – wake up/ pack up
6:00am – check out/ ETD to Sibonga
7:30am – ETA Sibonga
7:40am – ETA Simala Shrine (via Habal-Habal)/ breakfast
8:00am – Simala Shrine
9:30am – ETD to South Bus Terminal
11:30am – ETA South Bus Terminal
11:40am – LUNCH
12:30pm – ETA Taoist Temple
1:00pm – Taoist Temple
2:30pm – Sirao Garden
3:00pm – Temple of Leah
3:45pm – TOPS
5:00pm – La Vie Parisienne
5:45pm – Magellan’s Cross
6:00pm – Sto. Nino Church
7:00pm – Dinner at House of Lechon
8:30pm – The Pyramid at IT Park Cebu
10:30pm – Check in/ Express in Mactan  
You have quite a lot of choices when doing the Cebu City Tour. You can either rent a cab, go DIY or join a tour. In terms of convenience, you can go for choices A and C, rent a cab or join a tour which both has pros and cons. Choice A may be a little bit expensive but you can actually take your time in the places you can go to or make modifications to the the itinerary. The latter choice is cheaper but the itinerary is preset and you may have limited time on the place you’ll be visiting. Tour B is the cheapest choice you’ll have, at the same time, most exciting but you have to endure a lot of jeepney and habal-habal transfers and waiting which may take your time. This is a little challenging since you have to familiarize the jeepney codes as well. Should you choose this, you may want to follow this:
>From downtown Cebu, ride a jeepney (codes 04 and 17) to Eskina. Once alighted, take a habal habal to Taoist Temple. You can also charter for the habal that you took back to Eskina. 
>Once back at Eskina, wait for a 04H jeepney bound for Plaza Housing. Only the jeepneys with this code goes up to Lahug. Take one and alight at Plaza Housing. From there, take a habal habal that you can charter and take you to Temple of Leah, TOPS and Sirao Farm.
>take the same route backwards when going back to the City
>La Vie Parisienne, the Pyramid and House of Lechon are quite accessible when you are at the City proper. You can take any of the 04 and 17 coded jeepneys as it will pass by these places.
#NoFilter photos! Snaps with GoPro Hero 6! That cam is lit!
Simala Shrine in Sibonga, Cebu
Sirao Garden – Little Amsterdam

Taoist Temple – Beverly Hills
TOPS, Busay Hills, Lahug, Cebu

Temple of Leah

Circa 1900 – Ancestral House turned into a Restaurant

La Vie Parisienne
Magellan’s Cross, Downtown Cebu
Sto. Nino Church

The Pyramid Restaurant at IT Park Cebu

DAY 4: 10,000 Roses Tour / Home Bound
7:00am – wake up/prepare
8:00am – breakfast
9:00am – pack up/ check out
9:30am – ETA to Cordova
10:00am – 10,000 roses
11:30am – ETD to Mactan Airport
1:00pm – lunch
2:00pm – buy pasalubong
3:00pm – check in counter
4:00pm – board/ BYE CEBU HUHU

DAY 0:
P2P Bus Fare (Trinoma to Clark) – 250php
Dinner – 100php
Clark Airport Terminal Fee – 150php
TOTAL: 500php
DAY 1:
Taxi from Airport to South bus Terminal – 260php/2
Bus fare (Cebu City to Oslob) – 192php/head
Whale Shark Watching Fee – 600php/head
Breakfast – 60php
Bus Fare (Resort for Whale Shark Watching to Gravino) 25php
Bus Fare (Oslob to Bato) 40php
Bus Fare (Bato to Badian) 65php
*Canyoneering – 1500php
*Non-canyoneering – 45php
life vest – 50php
snacks – 65php
Bus Fare (Badian to Bato) – 65php
Bus Fare (Bato to Oslob) – 40php
Dinner – 178php
*with canyoneering – 2,871php
*without canyoneering – 1,466php
DAY 2:
Bus Fare (Oslob to Liloan Port, regular bus) – 25php
Fast craft fare – 40php
Terminal Fee (Liloan Port) – 15php
Ferry fare (Dumaguete to Siquijor-GL Shipping) – 160php
Terminal Fee (Dumaguete Port) 15php
Breakfast – 70php
Motorbike rent – 400php/day/2
Gasoline – 110php/2
Century Old Balete Tree Entrance – 10php
Cambugahay Falls – 20php/ unli tarzan jump
100php – lunch
Salagdoong Beach Entrance Fee – 25php
Ferry (Larena Port to Liloan Port) – 200php
Terminal Fee – 17php
Bus fare (Liloan Port to Gravino Pension House) – 40php
Dinner – 80php
TOTAL – 1,047php
DAY 3:
Bus fare (Oslob to Sibonga) – 92php
Habal habal – 50php
Breakfast – 90php
Bus fare (Sibonga to South Bus Terminal) – 85php
Temple of Leah – 50php
Sirao Garden – 50php
Lunch – 100php
Tops Cebu – 100php
*La Vie Parisienne, Taoist Temple, Simala Shrine and The Pyramid don’t have entrance fees
Dinner – 200php
Taxi Rental – 3,000php/2
TOTAL: 2,317php

Ten Thousand Roses Cafe in Cordova, Mactan Island, Cebu 

DAY 4:
Breakfast – 100php
Grab (Express in to 10,000 roses) – 160php
Entrance Fee – 100php
Grab (Express in Mactan Airport) 240php
Lunch – 120php
P2P Bus from Clark International Airport to NAIA T3 – 400php/ head
Grab (NAIA T3 to home) – 600php
TOTAL: 1,220php
Gravino Pension House (Oslob, 3 days 2 nights) – 1,797.94
Express Inn (Mactan Islans, Cebu overnight) – 912.41
TOTAL: 2,709.82 

Related image
7,904.91php – without canyoneering
8,809.91php – with canyoneering
*take note that souvenirs are not yet included in the budget
We flew with Cebu Pacific Air but our plane tickets were booked via Traveloka. It cost us 2,700php each. Sample itinerary may still vary depending on your preference and the time you’ll spend in each place. The same thing goes with the budget. It always depend on how much you eat and the souvernirs you’ll purchase. I think we spent around 2,000php to 3,000php on souvenirs.
Backpacking is among the most-fulfilling thing I’ve done in my life. I get to explore the streets of the cities and provinces I’ve never been, take different vehicles I’ve never rode before, talk to the locals most especially people and being delighted by the variation of their langauges and dialects and experience local food I’ve never tasted before. It also taught me a lot of things that I carried with me on my next adventure. I learned to respect everyone and everything, the interesting culture of different people and most of all, protect and take care of the wonders I have encountered. We can start doing simple things until we have become accustomed to it such as taking reusable drinking bottles, put our trash into our bags or pockets until we find a bin to transfer it into and not picking and taking anything from the place. Let’s all unite and do these and we’ll see if it makes the world a better place.

Anne Elizabeth Gumiran, also known as Queenie, is a 20-something, full-time public school teacher, a part-time travel blogger and a freediver. She started putting her stories of adventures and misadventures into words and pictures in 2017 and continues to do so as she shares her advocacy, Sustainable Traveling.


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